By Addie Goss
Laramie, WY – The Oil and Gas Conservation Commission will hold a meeting April 13th to discuss and possibly vote on proposed changes to its rules on hydraulic fracturing. That's part of the drilling process, in which a mixture of sand, fluids and chemicals is pumped into wells to break up gas-bearing rock underground. At issue are the chemicals used in the process. Some believe the chemicals can move into and contaminate groundwater.... something the Environmental Protection Agency has announced it will investigate. Commission supervisor Tom Doll says currently, the commission only requires drilling companies to give out generic information about the trade names of chemical mixtures put underground. The proposed rules would change that. "Now we're going to ask them to provide, how much of that is a gelling agent, how much of that is a surfactant, how much of that is a biocide, and what is the biocide name and what is the concentration."
Doll says the main reason the commission is doing this... is to show the federal government that Wyoming is already strictly reviewing fracturing chemicals, to avoid having the E-P-A step in and regulate the practice.